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The early, relatively heroic days of the conflict in Afghanistan are memorialized in this engrossing if glamorized war saga. Blehm (The Last Season, a B&N Discover Award winner) follows the exploits of Capt. Jason Amerine's Special Forces team Alpha 574, which choppered into Afghanistan in November 2001 to help future Afghan president Hamid Karzai organize anti-Taliban insurgents in the south. The team's mission—to turn chaotic and perpetually stoned Pashtun tribesmen into effective soldiers—seems impossible and, ultimately, proved unnecessary. Indeed, according to Blehm's account, the Green Berets' worst enemies were other Americans: meddling CIA honchos and army brass, a do-nothing Marine officer, and the air force spotter who mistakenly called in an air strike on 574's position, with ghastly results. The author overplays the comradely bond between Karzai and Amerine, who come off as a latter-day Washington and Lafayette, but doesn't quite succeed in wringing a military epic out of what was essentially a turkey shoot. Still, Blehm's warts-and-all account of the U.S. military machine in action is full of tension, color, and real pathos. 16 pages of b&w photos. (Jan.)
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“The Only Thing Worth Dying For is not only brilliant, it’s the one book you must read if you have any hope of understanding what our fine American soldiers are up against in Afghanistan.” (Former Congressman Charlie Wilson)
“A skillfully reported and masterfully written account of one of the most crucial moments of the War Against Terror. Blehm reminds us of the perils, the triumphs and the sacrifices made in the name of freedom.” (Bob Woodruff, ABC News correspondent)
“Through careful reporting and crisp narrative pacing, Eric Blehm has given us a thrilling, forgotten drama from the opening chapter of the war in Afghanistan. The Only Thing Worth Dying For will become an enduring classic of this extraordinary theater, where so much hangs in the balance.” (Hampton Sides, bestselling author of Ghost Soldiers and Blood and Thunder)
“Blehm provides powerful and unflinching insight into a real-life mission that ended in tragedy but left an indelible mark on history. From the comic moments to the bleakest hour, it’s a testament to how a small team of well-trained men can shape a nation’s destiny.” (Stephen Grey, award-winning author of Ghost Plane: The True Story of the CIA's Torture Program and Operation Snakebite: The Story of an Afghan Desert Siege)
“Eric Blehm has written a literary masterpiece about modern war. The whole witches’ brew is here: valor, honor, heroism, cowardice, incompetence, stupidity, triumph, blood, death and despair. That America has soldiers like these should fill every American heart with pride. Read this book!” (Stephen Coonts, bestselling author of Flight of the Intruder and The Disciple)
“No other book has gone to such depths in research, nor been so descriptive in recounting this critical mission during the earliest days after 9/11 when the US Army Special Forces successfully waged unconventional warfare in Afghanistan.” (Sergeant Major Billy Waugh, author of Hunting The Jackal and Isaac Camacho, An American Hero)
“The greatest story of a small unit’s battle through an untamed land since Lawrence of Arabia.” (Adam Makos, editor of Valor Magazine)
“A captivating account of our heroic warriors-a remarkable U.S. Army Special Forces unit’s hard-fought success against incredible odds. It reads with the thrill of fiction-but this is the damned deadly real deal.” (W.E.B. Griffin & William E. Butterworth IV, best-selling authors of The Traffickers and The Honor of Spies)
Not as good as Fearless in a writing sense but the story is every bit as good. Lots of military jargon to wrestle but a great story that needed told and heard.Published 2 days ago by Tech Junkie
Eric Blehm does an excellent job of telling this tragic story of ODA 574. The depth and detail that he gives the soldiers in this story is so rpofound that you feel a strong... Read morePublished 11 days ago by Anthony P.
Asu usual, Blehm's writing style puts you in the heads of the guys on the ground. Very easy to be swept away in this book; it's a great testament to the SOF soldiers that fought... Read morePublished 22 days ago by Dan Buerk
Not for me. I wasnt aware prior the type of military book that it was. Very short book, another thing g wasn't expecting.Published 26 days ago by Melissa
This is a great account of the initial days of the war in Afghanistan. This story focuses on the early days in Afghanistan and tells the story of an Army Special Forces A-team... Read morePublished 27 days ago by Trickster